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The War Of 1812 And The British Naval Blockades On The American Expansion Into Canada On Lake Erie

2728 words - 11 pages

The War of 1812 was a cause from the Naval blockades from Great Britain, and American expansionism into Canada. This war was decided on the battlefield, as well as the oceans and the Great Lakes. The Royal Navy had blockaded many of the harbors of the United States, and thus the United States declared war on Great Britain. Even though the United States was outnumbered in ships in their navy, they still outfought the Royal Navy of Great Britain. The United States Navy outfought, and outsmarted the Royal Navy, which led to a victory in the War of 1812. The United States Navy thus won the decisive battles on the Great Lakes, as well as the high seas.The war between the United States Navy and ...view middle of the document...

The American ships joined action against the Belvidera, but a burst in the barrel of a gun on the American ship, and the Belvidera's firing, led to mass confusion and the British ship was able to escape (Pivka 133). The next meeting was a victory for the United States Navy when the 32-gun Essex captured the 16 gun British ship, Alert on August 13, 1812. The Royal Navy had been dealt their first blow in the naval war with the United States, and they realized that this enemy that they were fighting was going to be fierce. Great Britain had ordered all of their ships not to make engagement with U.S. Navy ships, and they also sent over more ships from their European blockade to assist their ships off the U.S. coast (Pivka 133).On August 19, 1812 the American Navy boasted another victory when the USS Constitution captured the HMS Guerriere (Napoleonic Guide). The Constitution had been en route from Boston and was sailing 200 miles east of Halifax when the lookout called down and spotted masts on the horizon. The Guerriere, a 38 gun British frigate captained by James Richard Dacres, had been en route to Halifax when they spotted the Constitution. It was around 3:30 p.m. that the Guerriere backed the topsails and spun around waiting for the Constitution (Gruppe 83). Captain Dacres remarked to Captain William B. Orne that "the ship is boring down rather too boldly to be an American", and " the better he behaves, the more honor we shall gain by taking him (Gruppe 84)." This was a remark that would come back to haunt Captain Dacres and his crew on the Guerriere. Around 6:00 p.m. the Guerriere was within 50 yards of the Constitution and it was firing relentlessly, collapsing sails and creating great holes in the ship. Three times the First Lieutenant of the Constitution, Charles Morris, asked Captain Hull if they could fire back, and three times the Captain answered "No, not yet sir (Gruppe 84)." Captain Hall was preparing to give the Guerriere an ultimate blow. When the two ships were less than 25 yards apart Captain Hall had the Constitution move broadside when he gave the order to fire with every gun that the ship had. The effect of this broadside was tremendous to the Guerriere and it left the entire side nearly crushed in. This battle was the first frigate action of the War of 1812, and it left the United States Navy with a victory in 40 minutes that only a handful of Britain's enemies could do in 100 years.The American Navy went on after their previous victory to defeat the British in the next three out of four encounters. The next major clash came between the USS United States and the HMS Macedonian near the Canary Islands on October 25, 1812. Stephen Decatur, Captain of the United States, sailed in the waters of the Canary Islands searching for British frigates when he came across the HMS Macedonian Captained under John Carden. Captain Carden thought that the United States was really the USS Essex, a much smaller but quicker ship, so he decided to...

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